Padres @ Dodgers August 24, 2018: Padres try to conquer Dick Mountain

The Dodgers are playing bad baseball. They are 4.5 games behind the Diamondbacks for first place in the NL West with only 34 games remaining. In their last 10 games, the Dodgers have gone 3-7 while the Diamondbacks have gone 7-3 and the Rockies have gone 8-2 to pass the Dodgers for second in the division. It’s bad right now. At this moment, none of this matters. In about an hour, a 38 year old man will take the mound at Dodger Stadium wearing D. Mountain on the back of his uniform.

Padres
Dodgers
7:10 PM
Los Angeles
SS
Galvis
2B
Dozier
3B
Myers
3B
Turner
1B
Hosmer
SS
Machado
LF
Renfroe
RF
Kemp
C
Hedges
LF
Taylor
2B
Spangenberg
CF
Hern√°ndez
RF
Reyes C Grandal
CF
Margot
1B
Bellinger
P
Richard (L)
P
Hill (L)

Rich Hill starts for the Dodgers on this glorious Friday. Today is the first day of Players’ Weekend, which allows players to wear a nickname on their jersey. Richard Hill opted to use D. Mountain, and somehow got away with it. So here we are. Hill is coming off a rough start last time out, as he threw a season-high 111 pitches to get through six innings in Seattle, allowing four runs and four hits in the process. He did strike out eight batters, but he issues five walks for the first time this season. All four runs against Hill came in the first five batters of the game, as a walk, two singles and a three run home run put the Mariners up 4-0 with one out in the first. Hill didn’t allow a hit after the second inning, but couldn’t control his pitch count. He did give the Dodgers some length in making it to the sixth inning and the Dodgers tied it up after he came out, but lost on a bases loaded balk by Dylan Floro. Hill was on a hot streak coming into that start with a 1.78 ERA and 30:10 strikeout:walk rate in his previous four starts since the All-Star break.

Clayton Richard gets the start for the Padres. Under normal circumstances, it would be notable that Richard was starting against Hill. But, Dick Mountain is happening today and that’s really all that matters. Richard also has a solid Players’ Weekend nickname (Clay Clay). His pitching this season has not been so solid, as he owns a 5.11 ERA/4.54 FIP in 155 innings. His ERA is the sixth-worst among qualified Major League starters, although his FIP has only been the 18th-worst. He’s struck out 15.9 percent of the batters he’s faced this year while waling 8.8 percent of them and has allowed the sixth-highest hard hit rate (40.2 percent) among qualified starters this season. Richard has only faced the Dodgers once this season and allowed four runs in six innings. He hasn’t walked a batter in his last two starts, but hasn’t struck out more than three batters in a start since July 13th.

The Dodgers run a mostly-typical lineup against a lefty starter. Joc Pederson and Max Muncy both sit with Enrique Hernandez and Chris Taylor getting starts. Yasiel Puig was originally in the lineup, but was replaced by Cody Bellinger. Yasmani Grandal gets a start against a lefty instead of Austin Barnes.

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Ross Stripling‘s throwing session has been pushed back

He was originally slated to throw to hitters today, but will do so tomorrow instead. This all but ends any chance of seeing the Chicken Strip uniform out there this weekend.

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Puig’s removal from the lineup was apparently not related to the two-game suspension he is in the process of appealing.

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Dick Mountain.

About Alex Campos

Alex Campos
I'm a writer that has blogged at a whole bunch of places about a whole bunch of sports. I was most recently writing for Chavez Ravine Fiends, but was also the former editor at Dodgers Way. I graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Marketing. At Long Beach, I covered the Dirtbags in the 2014 season as an assistant sports editor at the Daily 49er.